Easter Egg in the Cr-48 BIOS

The firmware team at Google encoded an "Easter egg" in the Cr-48 BIOS that can be viewed by taking the following steps:

  1. Set your Cr-48 to Developer Mode using the instructions here

  2. Press the power button to start your Cr-48

  3. When the Chrome OS verification warning screen appears, type the following: xyzzy

  4. The screen will display the image below, a reference to the notorious Blue Screen of Death in Microsoft Windows


Bill Richardson at Google provided the following details about the origin and contents of this image:

  • The hexadecimal numbers are the ASCII representation of this text:

Greetings from the Chrome OS x86 firmware team. This message is brought to you by Randall, Bill, Vadim, Gaurav, and Kelly. Also by the letter G and the number 42. If you've enjoyed this gadget, please join us at http://www.chromium.org to help make it even better. We now return you to your regularly scheduled program, already in progress. No animals were harmed in the production of this message. Apply only to affected area. Cape does not enable wearer to fly. Contents may have settled during shipment. Use no hooks.

  • The proper names in the encoded message are the people on the Cr-48 firmware team.

  • The various library names that appear on the screen are references to the following:

    • firmware.exe - We are the firmware team, after all.
    • wfrichar.sys - [email address] is me.
    • rspanglr.sys - [email address] is the Cr-48 firmware tech lead.
    • HeartAu.sys - The starship Heart of Gold, from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
    • DevNull.SYS - /dev/null is the special bitbucket device on *nix systems
    • goglplx.SYS - The Googleplex is what some people call the Google corporate headquarters
    • mstrclas.SYS - Those who rule the firmware are the Master Class!
    • MstrShak.SYS - Master Shake, from the TV show Aqua Teen Hunger Force
    • Vega.SYS - Originaly vga.sys (a video driver); I thought of the car from Chevrolet
    • Nova.SYS - Another old Chevy
    • Gremlin.SYS - Yet another old car, this one from AMC
    • TARDIS.SYS - From Doctor Who, of course
    • Jupiter2.Sys - From the old TV show Lost in Space
    • CAMRA.SYS - The Campaign for Real Ale
    • wntrmute.sys - The AI Wintermute, from William Gibson's Neuromancer
    • rdaneel.sys - R. Daneel Olivaw, from a bunch of Isaac Asimov's novels
    • eschaton.sys - I'm thinking of Charlie Stross' SF novel Singularity Sky
    • sundiver.sys - The novel by David Brin
    • hal.dll - The HAL 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey
    • STARBUG.SYS - The shuttlecraft from the BBC sitcom Red Dwarf
    • kryten.SYS - The android from Red Dwarf
    • lister.sys - The slacker/hero from Red Dwarf
    • HOLLY.SYS - The computer from Red Dwarf
    • SERMOUSE.SYS - Serial mouse driver, I believe
    • PARMOUSE.SYS - So of course there must be a parallel mouse driver
    • MTYMOUSE.SYS - Mighty Mouse! Here I come to save the day! (a cartoon from my childhood)
    • DngrMouS.SYS - Danger Mouse, another mouse-themed cartoon
    • mkymouse.SYS - Some other cartoon mouse of some sort...
    • mnemouse.SYS - ... and his girlfriend.
    • HNdlNqry.sys - The spaceship Hot Needle of Inquiry, from Larry Niven's Ringworld series
    • serial.sys - The serial port driver
    • cereal.SYS - The cereal port driver
    • browser.sys - Chrome OS has a browser, right?
    • bowser.sys - Jon "Bowzer" Bauman
    • shanana.sys - Sha-Na-Na, the band that Bowzer sings in
    • zzzztop.sys - ZZ Top, a band I like better
    • bsod.SYS - This screen
    • enufstop.SYS - Enough! Stop!
    • croskrnl.exe - If the kernel has a name, it would be CrOS.
    • B0Fh - The IT hero in a series of stories by Simon Travaglia
    • NIGHTMAREGREEN - A really Bad Thing from the Laundry series of SF novels by Charlie Stross

Source: https://groups.google.com/forum/#!msg/chrome-notebook-pilot/hGf-vdxGGEA/dabDxde7incJ